Online Voter ID How do we do that?

From IIW

Issue/Topic: Online Voter Registration

Monday session 1 - N/O

Conference: IIW10 May 17-19, 2009 this is the complete Complete Set of Notes

Convener: Wayne Burke

Notes-taker(s): Heather West, Andre Boysen 

Tags for the session - technology discussed/ideas considered:

Voter, egov, online service delivery, proofing Voter registration, identity, claims, verify claims before they are issued. 

Discussion notes, key understandings, outstanding questions, observations, and, if appropriate to this discussion: action items, next steps:


Online voter registration hinges on authenticatable online identity for the public

BC government is working on a system where the information isn’t shared (avid the SSN issue)

Netherlands have a centralized municipal database of voters (thanks, Napoleon!). Canada and the US do not have this kind of centralized databases at the provincial/state levels

Trust in hardware is very different than trust in machines and hardware

In person voting is the one way to guarantee a private, secret vote

Make a list of the possible uses for an online voter registration: constituent services and communications, rulemakings, verified stakeholders, health care for single payer systems,

Don’t want an identifier, want to be able to see whether someone is entitled to vote (lives in the district, has not yet voted in this election, etc)

Keeping government communications and verifications to attributes rather than full information is helpful. How do you decide how to verify, though?

The real world system is bound to change because the change in the way that people interact and the speed at which we can change locations

The current proofing of voters often involves a utility bill - maybe get them to print some barcode on the bill to verify location.

No good way to prove residency - utility bills!

Canadian universal health care number is much like SSN in term sof being universal

NOTES FROM: Andre Boysen 

How to identify people. 

How come I can’t vote online?

Holland last election tried to innovate, but rolling  back for technology failures.

How to govern the process for US voting and registration, without invading privacy.

Omni handles are powerful but invasive. 

What is the information I need to decide if this person can vote?

How do I answer that question – who can authoritatively answer this question? 

Risks around the different steps in the process.

Risk around voter influence

Risk around voter identification

Risk around voter collection of intent

Risk around correctly tabulating voter intent 

There is certainly the potential to increase voter participation if we could remove the friction 

Verified voter capability will be great for voting, but what are the positives and negatives this being used in other contexts. 

This would be very handy to allow online communities to meet online with all participants knowing that their peers are validated in the same way. 

Knowing that there is a ‘real’ person attached to online collaboration is going to be key to prevent manipulation. 

It comes back to identity proofing.  

User control of brokering of information between AP and RPs is key. The AP can not prevent (nor should they) the user from making this disclosure 

Multiplicity or duplicated entitlement prevention needs to be considered. 

Voter registration basically an affidavit, license, or vendor bill showing address. 

There are tradeoff between how much data is in the credential and how much is derived through the use of the card. 

How to prove address without actually inviting auditors over to the house. Documents, credentials, volume + consistency of evidence.